Current as of: 2009
I. In this section:
(a) "Cause and origin investigation'' means the investigation necessary to determine the physical behavior of the fire, including the points or areas where the fire began, and the specific acts or conditions that caused the fire to occur.
(b) "Criminal investigation'' means the investigation necessary to determine whether a violation of the criminal code, including the crime of arson, has occurred, and the identification and prosecution of any perpetrator.
II. The fire officer in charge or designee shall investigate the cause and origin of fires, including the taking of evidence relative to the cause and origin of fires, except as enumerated elsewhere by statute.
III. (a) Upon determination by the fire officer in charge or designee that a fire is of suspicious or incendiary origin, determination of which shall include information received from the police officer in charge, the police officer in charge may:
(1) Conduct a criminal investigation.
(2) Restrict access to the scene.
(3) Collect and secure criminal evidence.
(4) Gather investigative information.
(b) The powers enumerated under subparagraph III(a) shall only be subject to the authority of the fire officer in charge to extinguish fire, protect against immediate life hazard, and treat and stabilize the sick or injured.
IV. The police officer in charge may request whatever assistance the police officer deems necessary from the fire officer in charge, who may provide such assistance.
V. Nothing in this section shall be construed to affect the admissibility of evidence at trial.
Questions & Answers: Fire Safety
New Hampshire Laws: Fire Safety
U.S. Code Provisions: Fire Safety
Federal Regulations: Fire Safety